Rep. Carl Seel may think that Sen. Carolyn Allen tried to run his fraud reduction scheme through the ringer last spring, but the Scottsdale Republican now says it was actually legislative leadership who put her up to the task.
Allen, who chairs the Senate Health Committee that scrutinized Seel’s idea during an April informational hearing, says she was encouraged by leadership – though she wouldn’t identify who, specifically – to hold the hearing and trash Seel’s proposal publicly. She told our reporter the hearing was well attended by lobbyists, many of whom didn’t have a dog in the fight, because “the consensus was that they wanted to watch Sen. Allen bitch-slap Rep. Seel,” Allen said. It was an open secret at the time that GOP leaders didn’t think much of the freshman lawmaker’s proposal and were working behind the scenes to remove it from the budget. Those who paid close attention knew that many of the efforts to discredit the anti-fraud measure came from the House’s 2nd-floor offices, with House Speaker Kirk Adams, in particular, working hard to squelch support of the idea. “I was told, candidly, by leadership that they [included it in the budget] to humor him, to pat him on the head, to make him come along,” Allen said.
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